I set out a few days back to get some pictures from back up Nameless Creek while the fog made for such soft, even lighting. (More from that episode soon.) I turned to look behind me from about half way down the pasture, north towards the house. And it occurred to me: ten years ago this week, we moved in. The house was still under re-construction.
At that point in time, from this vantage point, I’d have been in the middle of an over-planted pine thicket, put in for Christmas trees around 1985, then neglected, rangy, and a fire hazard–not to mention a visual barrier.
Over the decade, the five-acre pasture that was gained by dozing and burning the unthrifty pines in 2000 and 2001 has been such a pleasure to walk, to admire clouds by day and stars by night, and to let the dog range back and forth for moles, shrews and mice.
It is the quietest place I’ve ever known. We’ve had ten years of relative silence, save for the creeks and the winds along the ridge, which at this moment are bending even the stoutest trees south and east, silhouettes dipping, rising against the somber sky while across the country, millions have put themselves in the midst of acoustic bedlam for want of the unnecessary baubles of our time and at risk of being crushed.
You’d think maybe this was a perfect opportunity for natural selection to do its work.